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"...'You will be grieved to hear that Mrs. Westenra died five days ago, and that Lucy died the day before yesterday. They were both buried today.’

Again, I am struck by the burden that Mina is carrying even before she meets Van Helsing and learns about his crusade. She knew about Jonathan's illness and Mrs. Westenra's impending death before leaving England. Upon returning home with her new husband, she may be half-expecting to learn of Lucy's mother's death, but still looking forward to reuniting with Mr. Hawkins and attending Lucy's wedding.

Instead, within just a few days of her return, Mr. Hawkins dies suddenly, Lucy is dead and already buried, and Jonathan's sanity is threatened by an apparently mundane event in London. As she writes a few days later, "I have had so much trouble and anxiety of late that I feel I cannot bear more just at present." (25 Sept)

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